MACON, Ga. – South Dakota State played its third game in as many days on Wednesday at the CBE Classic against the host Mercer Bears, and despite a few ups and downs along the way, the Jackrabbits came away with a 74-61 win over the host Mercer Bears.
Nate Wolters led all-scorers with 16 points and with eight assists in the win, and took home tournament MVP honors in the process, as the Jacks won all three games at the event to boost their record to 4-2 on the season. Griffan Callahan added 13 points and a game-high eight rebounds, earning him a selection to the all-tournament team.
Taévaunn Prince added 12 points, and Chad White 11 points, including a clutch three-pointer that put the Jacks up by 10 points, with just over a minute to play.
Justin Cecil led the Bears with 15 points, all on three pointers, and all in the first half. Langston Hall added 12 points in the loss, which drops the Bears to 4-2 on the season.
SDSU made its first four shots of the game, but missed the next five, until Zach Horstman broke the slump with a three-pointer to put the Jacks up 12-9 with 10:38 left in the first half.
The Jacks would lead by as many as seven points in the opening half, but Mercer used a 10-0 run to regain the first half lead, and led by as many as eight points in the first half before taking a 34-31 lead over the Jackrabbits to halftime.
South Dakota State opened the second half on an 8-0 run to take a lead that lasted until the 6:02 mark, when the Bears retook the lead at 56-55. The Jacks got the lead back at 57-56 on a Wolters runner off the window with 4:25 on the clock, and never trailed again, steadily increasing their lead until White iced the win with his triple from the right wing.
The Jackrabbits get a couple of days off to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday before returning to action on Saturday at Nebraska at 1 p.m.
NOTES: Wednesday’s game marked the first-ever meeting between South Dakota State and Mercer ... The Jackrabbits and Bears played the game at University Center Arena in front of 1,568 fans ... Wolters moved from 37th on the all-time scoring list at SDSU to 35th with 1,031 points ... Wednesday’s game marked the first time the Jackrabbits played games on three straight days since Nov. 10-12, 2006, when they played three in a row at the BCA Classic in Columbus, Ohio